RPM Birthdays and Unbirthdays

Phonographians find many days and many ways to Celebrate the Phonograph!



Phonograph records have revolved at many speeds, most of which have come and gone.

Record speeds, however, are another way to remember the Phonograph.

There are currently six Friends of the Phonograph "RPM Birthdays".

These RMP birthdays are an opportunity to "tip your cap"to the history of revolutions per minute (rpm) record speeds, doing so as part of a Friend of the Phonograph's birthday celebration, aka a Phonographian's birthday.

These "tip of the hat" birthdays are based on the phonograph record speeds of "16 2/3" , "33 1/3" . "45" , "78" , "80" . "90" (1)

In other words, if you are a Phonographian and your birthday age is one of these RPM speeds you can acknowledge that RPM as part of your birthday celebration before you blow out your birthday candles and Remember the Phonograph.

Obviously this is an esoteric addendum to celebrating a birthday, nevertheless, it will give your birthday a unique dimension and an opportunity to explain your RPM phonograph factola.


(1) - The celebration of the phonograph's RPMs - although early disc and cylinder recordings were produced in a variety of speeds ranging from 60 to 160 RPM, FOTP Red Letter RPM Birthdays are currently the following:

16 2/3 RPM (first used in early 1930's and subsequently used for 1) spoken word recordings, 2) car music systems like Chrysler's Hi-Way Hi-Fi 2 of the 1950's 3) background music systems for restaurants and businesses 4) limited music formats - see Canada Antique Phonograph Society (CAPS) May 2010 article by Mike Dicecco for history of 16 2/3 format);

33 1/3 RPM (first used by Vitaphone in 1930 for electrical transcription recordings and introduced in 1948 by Columbia Records as the Long-Playing Record (LP));

45 RPM (introduced by RCA in 1949); For a brief history of the 45 rpm go to Historys Dumpster

78 RPM (the standard for early disc records from 1890s into the 1950's);

80 RPM (for Edison Diamond Disc records),

90 RPM (for Pathé disc records with vertically cut grooves requiring a special sapphire ball-shaped stylus).




If it isn't a Phonographia Birthday, it can still be celebrated!

Friends of the Phonograph look for any excuse to celebrate connections with the Phonograph.

Lacking a Phonographia Birthday an Unbirthday party is always an option to include the remembrance of some other Phonographia On This Day event.

Check the Phonographia Calendar for what happened today in history On this Day.


1951 Walt Disney record that can be used to celebrate un-Phonographia birthdays.






Phonograph History Remembered

The "On This Day" PhonoCalendar